Alexey Retinsky (ukr. Oleksii Retynskii) was born in 1986 in Simferopol, Crimea. Retinsky began his musical training with playing wind instruments. He graduated from the Simferopol School of Music, mastering the oboe, saxophone and trumpet. In parallel, he began to study composition autodidactically. Later on, he studied composition and electroacoustic composition at the Kiev Music Academy (under the tutelage of Prof. I. Sherbakov) and the Zurich University of the Arts (under Prof. Bruno Karrer and Prof. German Toro-Perez). In 2013-2014, he was working in the field of composition and audio design with a focus on multi-channel music in the sound studio “Idee und Klang” (CH; Basel). He completed his postgraduate studies with Prof. Beat Furrer at the University of Music and Performing Arts in Graz. Since 2014, he has been living and working in Vienna.
Retinsky’s oeuvre is broad and diverse; he creates symphonic, chamber and electronic music, as well as music for theatre, film, installation and performance art. His music works and various projects have been performed at the Mariinsky Theater (RU), National Philharmonic of Ukraine, MuseumsQuartier in Vienna, Museum Joanneum Graz (AT), Dresdner Zwinger (DE), and at the Festivals CIME/ICEM Denton (USA), MDR Musiksommer Eisenach (DE), Musik der zeitgenössischen Komponisten in Luzern (CH), Gaudeamus Muziekweek (NL) and many others. He has collaborated with such musicians and collectives as Antoni Baryshevski (UA), Voldymir Lawrinenko (DE), Luigi Gaggero (FR), Michail Menabde (GEO), Jean-Bernard Matter (FR); Olga Pryhodko and choir “Alter Ratio” (UA), the National Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine, Keuris Saxophon Quartett (NL), Ukho-ensemble (UA), Teodor Currentzis and MusicAeterna choir (RU). In the field of cinema, he has worked with the film company LenDoc (RU) and the director Nick Dreyden. In addition to his work as a composer and musician, Retinsky does painting and film photography.
His musical language seems peculiar in that it is distant from the tradition of the avant-garde and the so-called ‘minimalism’, despite the fact that the formal characteristics of the two can be found within his oeuvre. His experimental electroacoustic music often presents a different “music culture” as it aims to unite and transform a multitude of musical streams into a holistic experience. The term “music culture” in this context encompasses both the temporal and the geographic dimensions. Retinsky sees it as self-evident to try to revert the musical expression in all genres back to its original ritual meaning and create a connection between the listeners and musicians.
“… Alexey Retinsky is a fascinating young composer. This is a completely different category of music … “